Deontic Diversity

  • Sven Ove Hansson
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8554)


It is commonly assumed that deontic logic concerns “the” logic of normative concepts. However, a close look at actual usage shows that the structural patterns of deontic notions differ between different usages. Some of these differences are difficult to discern in natural language, but may be easier to keep apart with the more precise tools of a formal language. We should use the resources of deontic logic to discover and distinguish between different meanings of the deontic terms in natural language. Some of the ingrained disagreements on postulates in deontic logic may be resolvable if we recognize that the different viewpoints correspond to different meanings of the normative terms of ordinary language.


deontic logic Seinsollen degrees of ought moral rules situation-specific norms prima facie norms action guidance derived obligations subjective ought 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sven Ove Hansson
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of PhilosophyRoyal Institute of TechnologyStockholmSweden

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